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Re: Bug#294491: RFA: povray -- Persistence of vision raytracer

Daniel Burrows <dburrows@debian.org> writes:
>> It's disheartening because while there seem to be other free ray-tracers
>> out there with even better rendering quality than povray, I've not found
>> one with anything like povray's wonderfully expressive input language --
>> most other projects seem to follow the "all input is giant lists of
>> primitives output by modelling programs" method.  Anyone know of a
>> similarly expressive alternative to povray?
>   Would it be feasible to create a frontend that takes in a higher-level 
> language and spits out a list of primitives in the format that the better 
> free raytracers understand?

That would work for some things, but I suspect it's very hard to
approach the richness of what povray offers.

In particular, it's probably possible to do this for "objects", as long
as the underlying tracer supports enough primitive object types (my
impression is that some ray-tracers only support primitives like meshes,
which I suppose fits well with GUI modelling programs, but seems pretty
anemic for anyone used to povray).

One of the coolest things about povray is its algorithmic texture
support; I have no idea if anything else even gets close.

BTW, I don't have much experience with other free ray-tracers; usually I
look at them just long enough to get depressed at how impoverished they
seem compared with povray (even if they have more solid basic rendering)...
Does anyone here have any pointers?

Somebody has to do something, and it's just incredibly pathetic that it
has to be us.  -- Jerry Garcia

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